Brock’s Spirit

Written by Tom Taylor
Review by Cindy Vallar

General Brock is dead, but his sense of honor, justice, and bold service lives on in Jonathan Westlake. Only a handful of people know he is a secret agent. One is Sergeant Puffer, a British turncoat willing to reveal Westlake’s identity to the Americans. One who does not is the leader of the Loyal and Patriotic Society. He arrests Jonathan for being a collaborator and warns that should he escape, his mother will suffer. With the British army in retreat, it’s vital that Jonathan help prevent the Americans from gaining more ground. But he can’t do this locked in a cell. Then he learns that the woman he loves plans to kill Puffer for raping her. Jonathan is torn between duty and love but knows he must help the British army first. Otherwise, Upper Canada may fall to the enemy.

A worrier, Laura Secord will do whatever she must to protect her family. With Jonathan’s help, she rescues her wounded husband from the battlefield. Later, the Americans commandeer her home as their headquarters. When she overhears plans of an ambush, Laura must warn the British army, even though it means a twenty-mile trek alone through enemy territory.

Brock’s Spirit is the fifth book in this series on the War of 1812, but the story takes place between the third and fourth titles (Brock’s Traitor and Brock’s Assassin). It recounts the battles of Stoney Creek and Beaver Dams, as well as Laura Secord’s daring journey. Taylor’s knowledge of history and ability to create believable characters place readers amid these events in a you-are-there way. Fans have waited nine years since the last adventure, and this story is a welcome addition.